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The first semester is over!

The semester is over and I am excited to say that I got straight A's.  I enjoyed the classes, some more than others and am looking forward to learning more in the summer. My mom's air conditioning broke during the semester and I took the information I had learned and put it to the test using the things that I had learned.  I was able to eliminate different parts in the condenser such as the contactor, the compressor, capacitors and relay as well as the condenser fan but unfortunately could go no further because I didn't have gauges to see what the internal pressure was of the system.  But from the testing that I did I concluded that she was low on refrigerant.  She called her trusted A/C guy to come…
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Kickstart Capacitor and Potential Relay

Bob said good things about the Kickstart.   Bob is sort of a Luddite as far as the internet goes so I'll have to clarify for people of the internet what a Kickstart is.  I has nothing to do with Kickstarter.com.  Anyhoo, the Kickstart gives your compressor an extra kick to get it started making it last longer and making it more energy efficient.  For repair people it is a great way to help an ailing compressor last a bit longer but it also can be put into a functional system to make it last longer.  It's easy to put in so long as you are familiar with what goes where inside of the condenser.  If what goes on inside is a mystery to you, you'll probably want to have…
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Compressors are the heart of your air conditioning

The A/C unit outside of your house is called the condenser.  Inside of it are a couple of things:  The condenser coil and the hermetically sealed compressor.  The compressor's job is to pump refrigerant through the system and raise the pressure in the condenser coil.  Without it, there would be no refrigeration or air conditioning.  I took my condenser apart for a good cleaning of the condenser coils and found out that my compressor was made by Copeland and was a scroll compressor which according to the instructor, Bob, had a longer life than other hermetically sealed compressors.    The main difference between regular and scroll compressors is the lack of pistons in the scroll compressor.  Instead it has a scroll wheel inside of it which uses centrifugal force to…
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Clean Your Condenser Coil

I always knew that it was important to clean my condenser coil.  Well, I shouldn't say I always knew.  I realized  it was important when an A/C guy came over to fix my broken system and took a one second look over it and said the condenser coil was 90% clogged with the fluff from the dryer vent.  That dryer vent had been strategically placed by the home builder to nearly directly pump fluff into the condenser and it was doomed to fail.  After that point I always knew that should clean out my condenser coil. Air is sucked through the coil of your condenser by the condenser fan at the top and along with the air comes other stuff in the air.  In my case it was dryer vent…
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PTC Relays Don’t Work in Texas

PTC relays, common on many condenser units, just don't work in Texas.  The big Texas heat is just too much for the heat sensitive solid state relay.  The PTC relay works by heating up and cutting off the start winding in the compressor or at least cuts out the start capacitor if the system has a run capacitor too.  The problem is that it doesn't cool off enough to be ready to restart the compressor when it comes time start up the system to cool down the house again in 20 minutes on a hot August day.  This causes the system to try and start without the start winding at full power which does not work so well.  It was suggested by the teachers in the HVAC program at ACC…
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Bob Seems to Know Everything

It's been about eight weeks now.  Eight weeks of attending the HVAC program at Austin Community College.  At first I wasn't sure what to think.  The last time I was in college it was a little more of a hopeful group of students.  Younger, smarter, but seemingly no wiser.  This time around it feels a little less optimistic and more that this is the last hope for the people in the class to find a career.  Despite my impression of the other students I remained optimistic and excited about air conditioning and refrigeration and am over joyed at the prospect of learning this amazing technology.  I've been very impressed with my  teacher, Bob, who seems to be a treasure trove of air conditioning wisdom and has not been stumped by any…
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I Love Air Conditioning!

Back in August of 2016 my air conditioning in my office broke and I called the A/C guy to fix it.  It turned out that he didn't work on this type of air conditioning and would have to get back to me with recommendations of people who would work on this type of machine.  I scratched my head and looked at the machine and wondered to myself, "What makes this machine different than the big machine at my house?"  What indeed?!  I did a little digging and found out that you could get diagnostic codes from the machine itself that would tell you what the problem was.  The error code it gave me made any sense so I called the company help line and a gruff, annoyed sounding guy took the…
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